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Travel to Cuba and embark on an incredible sailing trip around the Canarreos Peninsula.

Spend eight unforgettable days sailing through the island paradise of Cuba. After being captivated by the time capsule that is Havana, venture offshore on a yacht for a Cuban encounter few people get to experience. Take in an array of natural wonders and get up-close to marine- and wild-life while sailing from Cienfuegos around the islands of Cayo Guano, Cayo Largo, Cayo Cantiles and many more. Uncover heavenly, untouched islands, swim in crystal-clear waters, snorkel over stunning reefs and spend days soaking up the chilled out vibe of irresistible Cuba. Find out why this vivacious country, so blessed with natural beauty and an abundance of cultural delights, is one of our favourite destinations.


Start
Havana, Cuba
Finish
Havana, Cuba
Country
Cuba
Style
Original
Theme
Sailing
Code
QSSC
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 8

Why we love this trip

  • Old-world charm, rich history, exciting nightlife – evocative Havana is like nowhere else on earth. Wander the cobbled laneways of Habana Viejo or head to Vedado for a taste of the world-famous Copellia ice cream

  • Beaches don't get much better than this. The islands of the Canarreos Archipelago offer miles of pristine white sands and sparkling turquoise reefs to explore

  • The underwater world of Cayeria Los Majaes is a snorkeller's dream, thanks to its warm, shallow pools that you could bask in for hours

  • From lobsters and loggerhead turtles to iguanas and monkeys, this trip spans the most eclectic spread of sea life and wildlife. Not to mention those odd Carribean creatures, the jutias

  • This being a true sailing trip, there's plenty of leisure time. When you're not soaking up your idyllic surrounds on deck, you can while away evenings in beachside restaurants feasting on delicious Cuban cuisine

  • The beauty of sailing is that each day is unique and, while we have a destination to reach, if the weather changes or something takes the group’s fancy, we can be flexible on the day's itinerary

Is this trip right for you?

  • You don't need to complete a Physical Participation Form, but it's important to read the trip notes carefully to make sure you're suited to this trip. You’ll need to feel comfortable with moving about the boat. The cabins and communal areas are spread over two decks, and the steps between decks are steep.

  • You will be entering and exiting a Zodiac boat during wet and dry landings and when returning from snorkelling. Although the waters are usually calm, it can get rough and choppy, which requires steady sea legs and a sturdy stomach. Rain or shine, your trusty crew will always be on hand to assist you.

  • The boats are real yachts, and this is a real sailing trip. Yachts are designed to maximise living area space, so sleeping quarters (typically four twin-share cabins) can be a bit cramped. That said, the adventure and exhilaration of an authentic sailing trip more than makes up for any discomfort.

  • While at sea and when exploring the islands, you may be exposed to the sun for large parts of the day. It’s important to use sun protection and drink plenty of water.

  • Sometimes changes to the itinerary are necessary due to the weather. This can happen with little notice. If you're flexible and have a sense of humour, you're bound to have a fun and relaxing trip across this beautiful part of the world.

  • It's important to have fun, but also to respect your shipmates who might be sleeping. If you do enjoy a late night out, consider booking a hostel (where available) for the night so you don't wake your fellow travellers (and more importantly the skipper) upon your return.

Itinerary

Bienvenido! Welcome to Cuba. Your trip begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. A local representative will brief you on what to expect over the course of the trip. After the briefing there is the option to join the group for dinner and an orientation walk. For the first night of your sailing adventure you will be staying at a local family-run guesthouse. Depending on numbers, the group may be split across two guesthouses which are located close to each other. The main guesthouse will be the central meeting point. If you arrive early and have free time, be sure to check out Habana Viejo (Old Havana) and its wonderful architecture. There are plenty of good museums to check out too, like the Museo de la Revolucion and the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. Sports fans can go to a baseball game between October and May for a taste of Cuba's number-one ball game. Lining up for a famous Copellia ice cream is also well worth it.

Accommodation
  • Guesthouse (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Transport and accommodation
Please note you will be travelling on a real sailing catamaran which are big on deck space however the cabins are made for sleeping and that’s about it. This means there’s limited space so we highly recommend travelling with a backpack or soft sided back, both of which can fit in the small cupboards provided in each cabin. Remember the bigger the bag the smaller the space for you in the cabin!
Rise early and head off to Cienfuegos to begin your sailing adventure. After breakfast with your homestay family, your local representative will meet you and transfer you to the main bus station for the 8.20 am bus to Cienfuegos. The journey (approximately 5 hours) includes a 30-minute stop at ‘Finca Fiesta Campesina’ (Fiesta Country Farm) at Jaguey Grande for refreshments and some nice photo opportunities. You will be accompanied for the bus journey, then meet your skipper at the station in Cienfuegos (look out for the Intrepid sign). Cienfeugos will be your last chance to stock up on a few things, perhaps white rum, sugar, yerba buena, limes and club soda (better known as the ingredients for a Mojito) before setting sail for the Canarreos Archipelago. Cienfuegos is the only Cuban city that was founded by the French, resulting in a beautifully designed and distinctly different Cuban city. You'll still feel a strong Caribbean vibe here though. Tonight you'll set sail again after dinner in order to wake up surrounded by turquoise waters, ready for your morning snorkel.

Note: The beauty of sailing is that each day is unique and, while we have a destination to reach, if the weather changes or something takes the group’s fancy, we are flexible on the day's itinerary. The itinerary is subject to change and may vary depending on weather and berth availability. Your skipper will make the final call to ensure your safety at all times.
Accommodation
  • Overnight boat (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Spend the next five days sailing the idyllic islands of Cuba, which are set among the beauty of the Caribbean Sea. Discover hidden beaches with untouched sands, clear blue waters and, if you're lucky, a turtle or two. By day, relax and chill out on the deck of the yacht, taking in the glorious Carribean surrounds; by night, enjoy island-style barbeques and unwind with new friends beneath the stars. Some of the spots you might visit over the coming days are:

Cayo Largo del Sur

The second-largest of the islands in the Canarreos Archipelago, home to some of the best beaches in the region. One stretch of beach is 13 km of the cleanest, whitest sand. The island is also home to nesting sites of loggerhead and green turtles. For those that way inclined, nudism is tolerated on certain beaches.

Cayeria los Majaes

A small group of beautiful islands with surrounding sand banks and shallow pools, excellent for snorkelling. The pools are less than half a metre deep, and with a sea temperature of around 30°C they are perfect for lazing around in. Look out for a large colony of iguanas on the eastern shore of the western pool.

Cayo Alcatraz

Pristine beaches of white sand where you can spot stingrays and manta rays. If you are not fond of snorkelling in deeper waters, you will find these more shallow waters a dream.

Cayo Rico

Arguably the perfect beach, with brilliant waters, soft white sand and a bar that serves up a range of cocktails. There are many umbrellas under which to enjoy a drink. There are also friendly resident iguanas here.

Cayo Estopa

An uninhabited island with a deep water channel. This is the perfect place to throw out a line and catch the night's dinner.

Cayo Rossario

Also uninhabited by people, this island teems with sea life – moray eels, groupers, barracudas, lobsters and the odd reef shark to name a few. The nearby reef is great for snorkelling.

Cayo Cantiles

Known as 'Monkey Island', Cayo Cantiles is uninhabited, with the exception of a small number of workers who tend to a monkey sanctuary. This island too is home to iguanas, and a funny rodent-like animal called a jutia.
Accommodation
  • Overnight boat (5 nights)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast (5)
  • Lunch (5)
  • Dinner (5)
Your adventure comes to an end today as you sail back to Cienfuegos. Tonight there's the option of heading to a local restaurant for one last dinner with your fellow travellers. You might also like to check out the live music scene later, or take to a dancefloor for some salsa.
Accommodation
  • Overnight boat (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
It's with heavy hearts we enjoy one final breakfast together on board the yacht before it's time to say goodbye to life at sea and head back to Havana. The Skipper will organise transfers back to the bus station where you will board your bus (unaccompanied) back to Havana. The bus departs at 10.30 and you should be back in Havana at approx 3.30pm. The trip finishes on arrival in central Cuba at the NH Parque Hotel. Post tour accommodation can be booked at the homestay which is about a 4 minute walk from the drop off point.
If you have planning on flying out on the last day please do not book a flight out before 8pm to take into account any delays that may occur.
If you wish to book additional nights in Havana pre or post tour, or stay on in Cienfuegos please let us know at the time of booking so we can make the appropriate arrangements.

Adiós y esperamos verte de nuevo.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

8 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 dinners

Transport

Boat, Public bus

Accommodation

Guesthouse (1 night), Overnight boat (7 nights)

Dates & availability

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Essential trip information

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